Tuesday, October 31, 2017

A PIG, A FOX, AND STINKY SOCKS by Jonathan Fenske.  New York:  Penguin Young Readers, 2017.  32p.  ISBN 978-051515781-9 hc. $14.99.  Gr. K-1   E READER

This three-part story introduces Fox and Pig and proceeds to reveal their personalities.  Fox is a trickster and Pig is the target of those tricks.  However, by the end of the book, the joke's on Fox.  The action flows from block to block, like a comic book, making each character the focus of the story without background clutter.  The conversation, in speech bubbles is simple, and it rhymes.  Echoes of Dr. Seuss and Mo Willems, including elements of fun, make this book perfect for beginning readers.
Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

SIX DOTS: A Story of Young Louis Braille by Jen Bryant.  Illus. by Boris Kulikov.  New York:  Alfred A. Knopf, 2017. 32p.  ISBN 978-044981337-9 hc. $17.99     Gr. 2-5     E PIC

Based on the true story of Louis Braille, Bryant tells the story of a normal, curious boy who injured his eye with an awl from his father's workshop.  The eye became infected and spread to the other eye, blinding Louis.  As much as he tried to use his other senses, he wanted to read and write, just like everyone else.  At a school for the blind in Paris, Louis was introduced to a coding machine that used raised dots to make letters on paper, resulting in secret codes for the battlefield.  He worked for years, refining the code to make each letter of the alphabet fit into a matrix of six dots, which is named "Braille" and used universally by those who have lost their vision.  References and biographical information can be found in the back of the book.  Kulikov's illustrations are most impressive, but my favorite is a graphic of the Braille Alphabet on each end page.  SIX DOTS won the Schneider Family Book Award in January, 2017.
Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

BALDERDASH! by Michelle Markel. Illus. by Nancy Carpenter.  San Francisco, CA: Chronicle Books, 2017.  32p.  ISBN 978-081187922-4 hc. $17.99    Gr. K-3   E PIC

Most avid readers of children's books have heard about the Newbery Medal, awarded annually by the American Library Association.  But, how many know about John Newbery's lifelong passion for stories?  Adults had volumes of books - why not offer books for children? Newbery became a printer and revolutionized the publishing business with numerous books for children.  And that's why educators and librarians remember him to this day.  The information is biographical in nature.  The illustrations add an element of humor with full pages of people in period dress doing what people in England did in the 1700's, plus a little more.
Lynette Suckow, Superiorland Preview Center, Marquette, MI 

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

BORIS AND THE WORRISOME WAKIES by Helen Lester. Illus. by Lynn
Munsinger.  New York: HMH Books for Young Readers, 2017. 32p. ISBN:
978-0544640948 hc.   PreS-K      E PIC

Boris the Badger had a million reasons for not being able to sleep during the day
(remember,  badgers are nocturnal). His worries were keeping him awake. After
hearing from his classmates about all the things he was missing in school because
he was sleepy, he decided to banish the worries and get a good days sleep so he
could resume activities with his friends. Boris demonstrates good problem-solving
skills and a willingness to work on the solution.
Kate, Board Member of the Les Cheneaux Community Library

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

POPTROPICA: THE SECRET SOCIETY by Mitch Krpata. Illus. by Kory
Merritt. New York: Harry N. Abrams, 2017. 112p. ISBN: 9781419723117 hc.
$9.95 Gr. 1-4 Graphic Novel

Action! Mystery! Humor! Adventure! This is a graphic novel that kids will have
a difficult time putting down. The bright use of color on the glossy pages is
appealing and expressive. There are multiple cells per page, and the images do
not become lost or overwhelming for the reader. The story is divided into short
chapters and depict a  humorous, action-packed science fiction adventure. The
main characters (Mya, Oliver, and Jorge) are diverse and well-developed as they
try to stop
misguided villain Octavian from hijacking time travel and changing
history. The quick synopsis of
where the series left off, as well as character chart,
helps the reader to get ready for this next installment. POPTROPRICA is indeed
an exciting "rest stop on the highway of history!"
Emily Cummings, Children's Specialist, Dickinson County Library